Find out what characteristics and habits put you at risk for prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer is the number one cancer in men and affects 1 in 6 men in their lifetimes. With those statistics in mind, you are probably wondering if you are at risk for the disease.
The following are major factors that increase the risk of prostate cancer:
- Your age – The simple fact is the older your are, the more likely you will be to develop prostate cancer.
- Your race – Unfortunately, men of African American descent are more likely to have prostate cancer than Caucasian men. African American men are also more likely to die from the disease than Caucasian men.
- Your family – You are twice as likely to develop the disease if your father or brother has already been diagnosed. The risk is increased if you have family members diagnosed prior to age 55 or if more than three family member have been diagnosed
According to the Prostate Cancer Foundation, there are risks associated with aggressive prostate cancer that are not connected to low-risk prostate cancer. Those risks are:
- Lack of vegetable in the diet
- Lack of exercise
- Agent Orange exposure
While risk factors for prostate cancer have been identified, having those risk factors doesn't necessarily mean you need to be screened on a regular basis. The need for prostate cancer screening will be under the discretion of your physician. Tests may be ordered if you are exhibiting one or more of the following symptoms:
- Difficulty urinating
- Blood in urine
- Slow urinary stream
- Difficult or painful erection
If you are suffering from any of the previously mentioned symptoms, talk to a physician or urologist. The Cancer Center at St. Petersburg General Hospital offers the latest technology in treating prostate cancer. For a physician referral or to have your medical questions answered, call our free Consult-A-Nurse® at 1-888-741-5122.